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Author Topic: Saxons in 1815  (Read 634 times)

Offline vtsaogames

  • Mad Scientist
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Saxons in 1815
« on: August 11, 2020, 06:47:02 PM »
In April 1815 Blucher's army contained the following Saxon units; 15 infantry battalions, 13 cavalry squadrons, 7 artillery batteries and a company of sappers, about 14,000 troops.

On the night of May 2nd a near mutiny took place. Only the 3rd grenadier battalion remained steady. Blucher ordered the entire Saxon army disarmed, 7 officers executed and flags burned. The personnel were distributed among other units.

On the night of June 16, after the defeat at Ligny, some 11-12,000 troops deserted Blucher's army and headed east. They were so numerous that Grouchy thought the main Prussian army had retreated that way. He wasted much of June 17 pursuing them until his scouts reported the Prussians had fled north to Wavre.

I have no proof but have always suspected that the majority of the fugitives were disgruntled Saxons. They were a major factor in Grouchy failing to keep Blucher away from Waterloo.
And the glorious general led the advance
With a glorious swish of his sword and his lance
And a glorious clank of his tin-plated pants. - Dr. Seuss


My blog: http://corlearshookfencibles.blogspot.com/

Offline Mad Gadgeteer

  • Librarian
  • Posts: 198
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2020, 09:21:03 PM »
Interesting....
"May the dice of your God's roll like the breasts of your favorite concubine."  Graeme "Henry" Henderson, Dumfries c1980

Offline LazyStudent

  • Bookworm
  • Posts: 97
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2020, 06:17:12 AM »
It's crazy just how easily the 'Allies' fell apart after Napoleon was defeated in 1814. And what crazy consequences it nearly had on the 1815 campaign. John Hussey's book (volume 1 of 2) on the Waterloo campaign devotes a chunk to the Saxon mutiny. I cannot recommend the book highly enough!!

Apparently the Prussians initially wanted to send the Saxons to fight under Wellington. And then when they mutinied the Prussian HQ wanted the British to supply ships and almost sent several thousand armed Saxons to the Belgian coast.

I'm always tempted by what if campaigns. And a French invasion of Belgium in early May (as was feared at Allied HQs) with a mutinus(French) Saxon Corps starting in the allied rear area. It would make for a tough battle for the Allies!!

Offline Mad Gadgeteer

  • Librarian
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Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2020, 10:43:22 PM »
I like 'what if' scenarios.

One of my favorites is as follows...

Before Napoleon decided to leave Elba he entered into a treaty with the US.  Basically, the US was to either land on British territory proper, or make a beachhead along either the Portuguese or Spanish coast. This was with the intent to create a secondary front.  It would also allow the US to seek revenge.

To make things interesting... the American forces would include a contingent of allied Indians.

Offline vtsaogames

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Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2020, 08:09:00 PM »
I like 'what if' scenarios.

One of my favorites is as follows...

Before Napoleon decided to leave Elba he entered into a treaty with the US.  Basically, the US was to either land on British territory proper, or make a beachhead along either the Portuguese or Spanish coast. This was with the intent to create a secondary front.  It would also allow the US to seek revenge.

To make things interesting... the American forces would include a contingent of allied Indians.

Anything that puts a wide variety of figures on the table is kosher.

BUT: methinks the US was darned happy to be out of the war with Britain with just a burned capitol.
And the vast majority of the Indians had allied with the British in an attempt to keep the settlers off of their land.

But all's fair in what if land.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2020, 09:07:44 PM by vtsaogames »

Offline Ray Rivers

  • Galactic Brain
  • Posts: 5552
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2020, 08:38:27 PM »
Been quite awhile since I have done any Napoleonic study.

Thanks for the story about the Saxon mutiny. Never heard that before.

Offline vtsaogames

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Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2020, 09:11:52 PM »
  John Hussey's book (volume 1 of 2) on the Waterloo campaign devotes a chunk to the Saxon mutiny. I cannot recommend the book highly enough!!

How are the maps in Hussey's books? If they aren't really good I could get away with the Kindle version. Maps and such are not great in Kindle, but I don't have to throw old books out to make room on my shelves. My wife has lots of books about art. poetry and philosophy, and I have lots about warfare and some other history too.

Do you also like his volume 2?

Offline tom_aargau

  • Librarian
  • Posts: 157
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2020, 03:34:17 PM »
A little more background:
As a result of the negotiations during the Congress of Vienna, Saxony lost part of its Northern territories to Prussia. The Saxon army was split in two brigades, one brigade becoming part of the Prussian army, the other one remained Saxon. Soldiers were assigned to the brigades by place of birth.
This was the cause of some mutinies, like the one mentioned above. There was an execution of 7 soldiers from the Provisorische Garderegiment. They were actually originally assigned as Blücher's guards.
About 1500 soldiers were disarmed and brought back to the Fortress Magdeburg. There they were assigned either to Saxony or Prussia.
Never read about burning Saxon flags being ordered, would be interested to see a link to a source.

Tom
There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today...turn two points to port.

Offline Andrew_McGuire

  • Mad Scientist
  • Posts: 678
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2020, 03:52:19 PM »
It would also allow the US to seek revenge.

For anything in particular? The burning of the White House had presumably already been avenged by this point, though they didn't - contrary to popular opinion - actually win the war.

Offline LazyStudent

  • Bookworm
  • Posts: 97
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2020, 08:51:42 PM »
How are the maps in Hussey's books? If they aren't really good I could get away with the Kindle version. Maps and such are not great in Kindle, but I don't have to throw old books out to make room on my shelves. My wife has lots of books about art. poetry and philosophy, and I have lots about warfare and some other history too.

Do you also like his volume 2?

Sadly for your bookshelf, he has quite a few maps and tables. Not sure how'd that would work on Kindle. Although, I also have the audible version, and with that version there is an accompanying PDF with all the maps. That does make it easier to read them.

Actually I've not gotten to his second volume yet. I'm still on the first! :D

Offline Mad Gadgeteer

  • Librarian
  • Posts: 198
Re: Saxons in 1815
« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2020, 10:23:29 PM »
For anything in particular? The burning of the White House had presumably already been avenged by this point, though they didn't - contrary to popular opinion - actually win the war.

It was just a suggestion for fun, as is the entire concept of "what if".  'What ifs' don't really need a justification or reason.  It could be revenge for impressment of sailors, it could be the White House, it could be for any number of reasons...

 

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